To give animals a legal voice in criminal procedures for animal mistreatment cases and contraventions to ensure the seriousness of the issue. Animal attorneys cannot replace law enforcement. They do, however, support the authorities in their animal law enforcement process. The authorities profit from the specialized knowledge and experience of animal lawyers and are strengthened in their position regarding animal owners. Animal attorneys can even be given official status. This allows them access to the files and gives them similar rights to attorneys defending human victims. On the other hand, animal organizations can play that role completely or with a reduced level of competence. The authorities have at least the right to defend the animal’s interests in front of the police, the state attorney and the lower and higher courts.
Idea behind this:
Giving animals an official voice in criminal matters with the legal status of, for instance, a court attorney for a mistreated human will ensure the public that the state takes animal issues seriously. The state is open to control by specialists at local, district and national level. Based on the detailed public database with all criminal cases and contraventions, the law enforcement authorities – like state veterinarians, policemen and public prosecutors – are supported in their animal-friendly position. The authorities closest to the case should, at very least, be able to speak up for the animals in the procedures and in court.
Although animal attorneys cannot replace proper animal law enforcement, they give animals a voice in court, before the state attorney and in the media. Their experience and opinion can lead to improvements at local, district and national level in law enforcement or in the adoption of new legislation. Citizens start to regain confidence in the state within this emotional animal atmosphere.